Home > Enabling Technology, Knowledge Management (KM) > Positioning SharePoint as the Focal Point of New Age Knowledge Management

Positioning SharePoint as the Focal Point of New Age Knowledge Management

The almost total use of the Internet to manage business activities in small to medium sized organizations has propelled workplace collaboration and knowledge handling to an accepted best practice.

This movement is driven in large part by web-inspired knowledge and content-management-focused software exemplified by Microsoft’s SharePoint.

This widely used solution provides features rich in information and content capabilities such as workflows, alerts, discussion boards, document libraries, taxonomy and categorization, shared workspaces, forms and surveys, personal pages and profiles, and the ability to pull in and display information from data sources outside of SharePoint’s environment itself, including the Internet (“web parts”). Access controls have also significantly evolved, enabling people to access the files and directories required to support their work activities, while limiting access to others. Meanwhile, over the last few years, data storage capacity has exploded, costs have plummeted, and access speed has improved dramatically.

Unsurprisingly, for most organizations the volume of documents being managed has ballooned exponentially and should continue into the future.

But we still need to ask – has knowledge management (KM) scaled in proportion to the volume of information available and can KM still provide increasing levels of productivity improvement if all employees access the information required to support the successful completion of individual and team-based business transactions and decision-making?

Albeit features like enterprise search, notifications, and improved metadata are dramatically changing work environments and habits, many information management hubs are, in effect, still traditional data silos where information is safe and organized but inconvenient and problematic to access, explore and share! In fact, despite powerful information applications currently available, effective collaboration is still largely dependent on the quality of the corporate culture and user participation.

How does an organization address the problems associated with radically changing traditional IT methods and roles, thereby eliminating ‘sacred cows’ in the new knowledge-centric business and technical environment?

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